Tackle shops are struggling to stay afloat as fewer people are taking up the hobby fuelling a wave of closures.
The number of independent fishing and angling shops has plunged by 63 to just 458 in the past year alone, according to the Local Data Company.
Many are being sunk by the competition from online rivals, such as Amazon.
They include the Friendly Fisherman in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, which is closing on Christmas Eve after nearly 50 years. Owner Andy Lush said fewer young people are taking up the sport.
Andy, who is retiring, said: “A lot of parents nowadays haven’t got the time to sit with their kids by the riverside.
“We are going back to fishing being a cottage industry.”
Environment Agency figures show the number of rod licences issued has fallen from 1.4million to around 955,000 in the past 10 years.
And rod licences for children have almost halved from nearly 120,000 to 56,000 in that time, even though they are free.
The Mirror’s High Street Fightback is battling to rescue town centres.
Shop sales have suffered their slowest growth on record, despite a huge wave of discounting in October month.
Sales were 0.6% higher in October compared with the same month a year ago but, on a 12-month basis, they slowed to a new low of just 0.1%.
High street fightback
Shops, especially fashion chains, slashed prices in October to woo customers.
However Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium, said: “The longer term trend remains bleak, with 12-month average sales growth at a new low.”
She added: “Retailers will be looking nervously at the months ahead.”